If one were to take an informal poll of CSMs asking what their number one goal with customers is, a majority would probably answer something along the lines of “keep my customers happy.” After all, what do happy customers mean? They mean long-term customers, and retention is at the root of any successful customer success strategy.
Looking at what customer retention requires at its very foundation, the answer could be summed up in one word: LOYALTY.
Happy customers have a personal bond with their vendor organization and their CSMs. They are loyal to the product and the vendor organization itself and, in the best-case scenarios, are true advocates and voices for promotion in their industry.
But what does it take to build loyalty, make customers happy, and drive customer retention? Here are some fool-proof paths CSMs can take to
1. Approach ideas from a customer-centric mindset.
When presenting a new feature, upsell, or even the next step in an implementation plan, try to approach your ideas from the customer’s standpoint instead of your internal view. While you may want a customer to add on a new product feature because it impacts the bottom line, what does the customer stand to gain with this enhancement? Always lead with the impact the idea (or issue) will have on the customer.
2. Focus on listening, not just talking.
As a CSM, you have a lot of information to share with your customers, and it can sometimes seem as though everything is a high priority. Instead of monologuing to customers over the phone, ask what is on their minds. Always leave open lines of communication, and ensure customers know they can reach out with any issues or questions.
3. Don’t ever try to hide anything from your customers.
If there is an issue or something is wrong with your platform, don’t try to hide it from your customers. Instead, be upfront and honest and, if possible, present an action plan to address the issue head-on. This can help show your customers that you’re on their side, not fighting against them.
4. Always work from a long-term customer roadmap.
Sometimes, customers can grow disengaged with a vendor organization because they can’t visualize where the relationship will go in the future. What is the point of investing in a product or service if you don’t understand the big picture? Working from a long-term customer roadmap can help the customer see where their relationship with your company is heading with the final goal in mind.
You can learn more about retaining customers and building customer loyalty with these additional resources from ClientSuccess: